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Please Please Me
List Price: $18.98

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Product Description

Their first-ever album, raw and rough and still very rock & roll. Lennon and McCartney begin to flex their writing muscles and had already scored two UK hits when this appeared, but they still relied heavily on the cover material to see them through. Their insecurity about their own abilities seems curious in hindsight since they'd pulled the title song and "I Saw Her Standing There" (with thanks to Little Richard) out of their hats. But they were an unknown quantity, still to launch a million bands and take pop music to places it had never dreamed off. A small step for four men, a giant leap for music. --Chris Nickson

Japanese exclusive reissue of 1963 album. This Toshiba/EMI pressing features an OBI strip (different from the last Japanese pressings issued in 1990) & an insert with Japanese text & lyrics in Japanese & English. Manufactured & pressed in Japan. This album has been direct metal mastered from a digitally remastered original tape to give the best possible sound quality. 2003.

Customer Reviews:

  • Strong beginning
    Straight from Hamburg, the little known at the time beat band plays their current stage set in the Abbey Road studio and records their first album in ONE 12 hour session, what an amazing beginning....more info
  • You say you want a revolution?
    To truly appreciate the Beatles for who they are in the canon of music history, you have to consider that prior to this album singers and songwriters were very rarely the same people. Accomplished singing legends like Nat King Cole, Frank Sinatra, and Elvis Presley almost never wrote the tunes they sang. It was NOT a badge of irrelevance to be "just" an interpreter of song. For better or worse, that all changed shortly after the Fabs burst onto the scene.

    From this first album, you only see the seeds of the shift: 8 of the 14 tracks here are "Lennon/McCartney" and several of them are fairly unremarkable tunes that don't really hint at what either John or Paul would become (to say nothing of George).

    That said, the opening track does make it plain that history is about to change. That "1,2,3,fah!" that bursts out of the speakers is nothing short of incendiary..notice to the old guard that there's a new sheriff in town.

    "I Saw Her Standing There" has proven durable enough to survive a trampling by 80s teen popper Tiffany and an 80s rewrite (albeit a good one) by 80s rocker Joan Jett (that's really all "I Love Rock and Roll" is..). It still resonates more than 40 years later. Other standouts are the title tune with its building harmonies on the "C'mon..." bridge, the almost bossa nova shuffle of "P.S. I Love You" (the idea of trading lead vocals between the group in unison and Paul was also a relatively new idea at the time), and the decent "Do You Want to Know a Secret?". If those aren't enough, they manage to place another all-time rock classic into the debut with John's tonsil-shredding cover of "Twist and Shout" that accomplishes the rare distinction of superseding the original (sorry, Isley Brothers fans..)

    It's obvious that the Fabs owed a big debt to 60s girls groups ("Chains") and R&B("Anna","Boys","Baby it's You") but their versions reveal themselves as pallid garage band knockoffs of the "real thing". Show tune "A Taste of Honey" is also an ill fit for the group.

    If you somehow have no idea who the Beatles are, don't start here to understand them. This is really only necessary to complete a collection, or to understand their beginnings. If you're looking for "suit era" Beatles music, the better stuff was still to come.

    3 1/2 stars...more info
  • Enjoying trip down memory lane!
    My wife purchased this CD on my account. She is a Beatlemaniac from the '60's. She is very pleased with the quality of the CD, and told me that this was the moptops first album....more info
  • almost there....
    i now have all the official beatles cd's...i only regret emi and the fabs have not remastered these for us...maybe someday......more info
  • To Poppy
    The Beatles, one heck of a great band, millions of people are fans including me, but I am not such a big fan about this album. The Beatles, "Please Please Me", realesed in 1963 is a short snippy and poppy rock album all about relationships....YAWN.... Anyways Please Please Me was recorded in about 585 minutes and took only one day to record, it's bassicly just a CD representing the songs they played live and many of the songs on here were played live in the studio. All the songs just sound the same, theres nothing different. Please Please Me is bassicly just your average short 2:45 songs with a little guitar solo, bassicly just a normal pop album for that time. Too some this album is a classic but too me its an album, you can afford not to buy. The two only really good songs on here are, "I Saw Her Standing There", and "Twist And Shout". Please Please Me in my opinion is very overated and on Rolling Stone Magzines list of the 500 greatest albums of all time this album came at 39 before Pink Floyd's masterpiece, "Dark Side Of The Moon"? What? All in all this album is for those who like to listen to early Beatles songs or just like all that early 60s late 50s bubblegum pop stuff. If you want to buy some actullay great Beatles albums that are rock classics go for, Rubber Soul, Revolver, Sgt. Peppers Lonely Hearts Club Band, The White Album, and Abbey Road. Buy those albums not this one....more info
  • Great Great Great Great Great!!!
    Wow! It is amazing that there are so many hits in this album, especially since this was their first album in England. So many hits, and one of my favorites of all time (I Saw Her Standing There) is the first track! Even the lesser known songs are great and feel like classics. I don't think there is bad song on this record. If you don't own any Beatles albums and you want a taste of their early work, this is a very good place to start. ...more info
  • The Beatles First - A Must Have
    The Beatles first album boasts strong Lennon/McCartney tunes, such as its hit title track, "Please, Please Me," as well as "I Saw Her Standing There," and "Love Me Do." It also shows the Beatles' ability (and early tendency) to do covers such as "Chains" by Carole King and Gerry Goffen.

    The album was rush-released by EMI in 1963. In fact, the whole album was recorded in a famous one-day session. The final track recorded during this session was "Twist and Shout," by Phil Medley and Bert Russell, a favorite Beatles cover from their Hamburg and Liverpool nightclub days. On this album, "Twist and Shout" was recorded in a single take with Lennon already suffering from a sore throat after eleven consecutive hours of recording. This apparent weakness actually helped enhance the edgy sound of Lennon's lead vocals on this track....more info
  • A pleasing debut
    Early Beatles albums contained a healthy mix of McCartney-/Lennon-penned originals alongside a batch of cover songs that the band performed with gusto onstage. Some of the studio cover songs were hearty rock `n' rollers that perfectly captured the group's aggressive, raw mentality when playing live, while others were pedestrian crooners best played as dinner music. Unfortunately, though it shows flashes of early brilliance, "Please Please Me" has a little too much dinner music.

    That's not to say that there aren't a few great cover songs here. "Boys" (Luther Dixon/Wes Farrell) is a rollicking rave-up enhanced by the great (and perhaps underused) voice of drummer Ringo Starr. And closing out the album is the classic "Twist and Shout" (Phil Medley/Bert Russell), a feel-good, get-your-butt-on-the-dance-floor rocker where John Lennon's ripping vocals were strained to the max in order to finish up the record during a long day in the studio back in 1963.

    To give the Beatles credit, their repertoire of onstage and studio covers songs was vast, reflecting the boys' wide array of musical tastes. In today's world, the writers of many of these chosen covers are obscure, and that's OK in my book if the songs are somehow stimulating. Unfortunately, though, the Beatles were likely told by the big-wigs at Parlophone to include schmaltzy pop standard "ballads" to appease the female audience that would one day adore them, and thus, we get rather bland choices like "Anna (Go to Him)" (Arthur Alexander), "Baby It's You" (Burt Bacharach/Luther Dixon/Mack David) and "A Taste of Honey" (Bobby Scott/Ric Marlow).

    On the flip side, the melodic McCartney/Lennon love songs on this record are rather good, especially "P.S. I Love You" and "Do You Want to Know a Secret." And the duo also strike gold with a few early classic gems like "I Saw Her Standing There," "Please Please Me" and "Love Me Do," all riveting, catchy songs that showcase the Beatles' various budding talents in different ways.

    So while the Fab Four's hearts were probably in the right place when they (and their "superiors") selected these cover songs, the end result is that portions of "Please Please Me" are a bit flat. But all these years later, perhaps these slip-ups in cover choices could be viewed as a good thing, since it shows the Beatles were mere mortals whose touch did not produce gold every "single" time. ...more info
    Their first time out with the rawness and powerfully,explosive sound unmatched by any other artist,with the exception of Elvis,Please Please Me,consist of hard rockers and ballads showcasing each member of the band,McCartney's,I Saw Her Standing There,and,A Taste Of honey,Lennon's,Twist And Shout,and,Anna,Harrison's,Do You Want To Know A Secret,and Chains,Ringo takes the cue and wails on the potent rocker,Boys,featuring one of the better Harrison leads and of course there's,Please Please Me,the Beatles were probably not the best musicians in the world,gradually improving through the years,but there was a certain chemistry within themselves that combined a unit of one,with their tight harmonies and the brilliant songwriting,8 of 14 tracks are Lennon/McCartney compositions on here,the rest being covers,of course after this album they went a long way baby,a long and winding road,a great Beatles achievement,and an early glimsp of the geniuses at work. ...more info
  • Pure rock and roll heaven!
    This Cd stays in my car always! John's voice gives me chills just like he did in the 60's! I was lucky enough to see the Beatles sing in 1966 in Memphis, and it was amazing. My favorites are "No Reply" and "I'm a Loser".This CD shows pure raw talent that was created by these 4 geniuses! It always lifts my mood....more info
  • Debut Album
    That means it's not good. 2 good songs and that's it.

    The 60s are over....more info
  • all time classic
    A great collection of covers and a Lennon-McCartney song or two. Captures the excitement of the day, and the wave of bands to come.Amazing to think it was recorded virtually live on primitive equiptment.......more info
  • The explosion still hasn't faded...
    Significant moments in history always fog hindsight. With a swift machete-chop they bisect an era into mutually exclusive units of "before" and "after." People firmly situated in the "after" of such a Krakatoa event must contort their brains to conceive of life "before" that historical line was etched. For instance, those born long after the Viking raid of Beatlemania probably have trouble conceiving of pop music culture before the Fab Four's inexorable arrival. After all, those deities of the 1960s mainstream were once nobodies. They once could traipse down the street without being hogpiled by screaming flailing fans. Before 1963 few wanted pieces of their clothing, their autographs, thier underwear, or even less mentionable things. "Please Please Me," their first album, changed that with a zap. Thousands of flat vinyl cylinders whirling at 33 1/3 sliced into the conscious of a generation. And then nothing seemed the same in the eternal "after." The "before" became, and remains, almost incomprehensible.

    People across the ocean from Her Majesty's domain hadn't yet felt the tremors. They would soon be bowled over, but "Please Please Me" remained a British phenomenon even after the Ed Sullivan Show. Americans instead received a hybrid album, called "Meet The Beatles," made up of singles and other bits. In fact, all of the songs on their first British album weren't released in the U.S. until 1965 with "The Early Beatles." Even in the LP era, "Please Please Me" remained difficult, but not impossible, to find in the United States. The CD releases of the 1980s forever corrected this piece of marketing butchery. Now we're all on the same page.

    This album has a naked and raw sound compared with their subsequent releases. Going back again to that murky time when they were relatively unknown, Parlophone, their British label, had no reason to see cascading dollar signs under those Counsin Itt moptops. To the suits, this was just another band riding the industry conveyor belt. On a budget for the first and last time, the group recorded the entire album, with George Martin behind the glass, live in a single breakneck session at Abbey Road. No overdubs. No studio tricks. They played No. 2 Studio like they played the Cavern Club. As such, this album captures the young band's live sound better than any known recording. Their energy and skill is undeniable. The frenzy that followed remains somewhat understandable.

    From this innocent beginning The Beatles would revolutionize the music and recording industries. Going forward, the band had progressively more control over the studio recordings and even over the album art. This cover, taken at EMI's Manchester Square offices, remains their only cover that was somebody else's idea. Six years later, a cosmic eyeblink, they would reprise it for an unused "Let it Be" cover before fading into legend (the picture ended up on the cover of the 1967-1970 "Blue" album). "Please Please Me" stands on that historic threshold dividing the eras of "before Beatles" and "after Beatles." Something made them different. Something about them spoke, and continues to speak, to millions. Those of us forever stuck in the amber of the "after" will continue to reap the benefits of the changes they made while pondering just how they pulled it off. It all started with a frenetic countdown....more info
  • Thank Thank You
    "Please Please Me" remains one of rock's seminal recordings, timeless, raucous, and unparalleled for fun. The covers are amazing, particularly Lennon doing "Anna (Go to Him)" and then tearing his throat out with their spectacular version of "Twist and Shout." The originals are even more astonishing; the bluesy bounce of "Love Me Do" is every bit as exhilarating as it was in '62. These fourteen performances are priceless rock 'n' roll, the album itself an undeniable call to a time when rock was about having the time of your life. Listening to this album almost fifty years later, the effect is every bit as empowering....more info
  • Average
    As much as it pains me to call a Beatle record average (they're my favorite band ever), that word sums up Please Please Me pretty well. Don't get me wrong, it has its moments - album-opener I Saw Her Standing There is certainly one; Ringo's showcase Boys is a blast, one of my favorite Ringo-sung tunes; the justly legendary title track; Love Me Do (the group's first #1 hit in America) and especially the high-energy cover of Twist And Shout. But there are one too many weak tracks. For one, A Taste of Honey is arguably the worst thing the Beatles ever did, not counting Revolution #9 - in the Beatles' defense, they hated it, it went as far as John singing "A waste of money" instead of the title phrase in concert. The rest is middle-of-the-road pop. It's inviting, quick, and catchy as hell, but doesn't nearly measure up to the high standards the later records set. I guess I made a mistake by listening to this after the late '60's classics. So you won't miss your $15 if you pick it up, but don't expect Abbey Road....more info
  • Beatles British Catalog Remastered, To Be Released 9-9-09
    I wanted to take this time to let you know that word has officially come out through Apple Records/EMI that the Beatles british catalog has been digitally remastered with all twelve original albums on CD being re-released in stereo on September 9, 2009. The album Magical Mystery Tour, which became part of the Beatles CD catalog in 1987, will be included and the two CD's Past Masters Vol. 1 and Past Masters Vol. 2 will be combined into one CD set. The CD's will be available individually or as a box set also being released on the same day. All the Beatles albums are masterpieces in their own right, and now for the first time, Beatles fans can hear the first four albums (Please Please Me, With The Beatles, A Hard Days Night, Beatles For Sale) on CD in stereo. It might be worth waiting until September to get the stereo releases of these classic Beatles albums here on Amazon....more info
  • A Great First Album
    The Beatles first album "Please Please Me" is a gem of a first album with Lennon and MCcartney (or McCartney/Lennon on this album)penned songs such as I Saw Her Standing There, Misery, Ask Me Why, Please Please Me, Love Me Do (their firs Aussie hit) P.S. I Love You, Do You Want To Know A Secret and There's A Place. It also features the Carole King and Gerry Goffin song Chains and songs by other writers such as Anna, Baby It's You, A Taste of Honey and Twist and Shout. 14 great songs on a very well crafted album. Highly recommended for any Beatles fan. Great Rhythm and Blues from the Merseyside "Kings of EMI"....more info
  • Awsome Beatles
    My son who is 12 and born 31 years after its release thinks that this is the best Beatle album.He likes to play it,and it proves to me that anyone from any genneration can like The Beatles music.Yeah ok,he has me to brain wash him,but you get no arguments from him.
    Amazingly this album was recorded in a day due to a busy scedule at the record company.And who were these guys anyway,thinking they are going to be famous.
    They had been rejected from alot of record labels,and their new drummer Ringo had just replaced Pete Best.
    They may have been new to the recording industry but they had been playing pubs and clubs for years.So they could play,not like these manufactured bands of today.They played real instruments.And after a long day of recording they got to the song Twist And Shout,and Johns voice was so croaky,but it seemed to fit into the song well.
    You wont find a bad song on this album.Its rock and roll at its very best....more info
  • Beatles were the best live band in Britain
    This is The Beatles' first album, and shows what the prior four years of gigging can do for a band with an encyclopedic knowledge of American pop and rock n' roll.
    But this is not just any band-- this is the newest version, with the final piece of the miraculous puzzle in place: I mean Ringo Starr, of course, who was the best drummer in Liverpool at the time.
    He was the one primarily responsible for putting the "beat" in The Beatles, and having him at last made The Beatles ready for the big time. As it was, his swinging and driving drumming, those funky tom tom rolls, and that splashy cymbal work made the band's early music BREATHE with energy, character, excitement.
    George Martin basically tried to record the club act as honestly as possible, but even then Martin was working magic in terms of editing-- George's solo on "I Saw Her Standing There" is a patch job of several different takes.
    And on this opening number we already hear something new and different: John's modal harmony under Paul's melody-- something Everly-esque but different and darker. This kind of intertwined line shows up throughout their career, most notably in "If I Fell" and "Hey Jude". We also hear a tight band with each member propelling the other along, Paul's staccato bass synching up with Ringo's propulsive drumming, and John playing rhythm guitar in the upper register like a whirligig trying to lift the song off the ground.
    On "Misery" we are introduced to the primal/sexual rock howl of John, "hampered" by a nasty head cold but carrying on with cough lozenges and cigarettes. This time Paul harmonizes above John in a more conventional manner, and we hear how the timbres of John and Paul's voices mesh together so well. On the fadeout the falsetto "la-la"s give us that Lennon humor.
    "Anna" shows that the band were real students of American music, always looking for obscure B-sides to exploit and show how they have mastered and made their own such material. This song is a showcase for John. His voice is one of the great instruments of rock n' roll as well as rock n' soul, and he is at this point a far more expressive, sexy, and sincere singer than Paul.
    "Chains" is another cover that shows how nicely the three singers can harmonize at this early stage, and George handles the lead vocal with a kind of one-off casualness that is endearing. Imagine having John and Paul as your backing vocals!
    "Boys" is a great rocker and features a fun vocal by Ringo with backing vocals by John and Paul, whose joyousness is infectious.
    "Ask Me Why" is a fun little song, with tight three-part harmony and a campy John extending his "why", "you", and "true" with playful "woo-woo-woo"s.
    "Please Please Me" was their first hit single and was actually recorded a few months earlier. The song's call and response climb-up is erotic and infectious, Paul's bass playing is bouncy and chugging all at once, Ringo's drumming is swinging, and John's voice swoops and soars on the refrain around the other vocals in such a way that it sounds like more than two voices. David Crosby must have picked up some tips from Lennon on this song when he formed The Byrds.
    "Love Me Do" is lovely and simple yet has a deceptively complex harmony. I feel it shows that John and Paul were mates and really cared for each other, and its echoes can be heard all the way to "Two of Us" on their final album, "Let It Be".
    "P.S. I Love You" is a nice solo vocal showcase for Paul, and is Elvis-like in concept but is all Paul in terms of sweetness and romance. This is the kind of innocent and non-threatening element that made teeny-boppers develop mad crushes.
    "Baby It's You" is another cover song that exceeds the original version by The Shirelles. It exceeds because of John's vocal once again, at turns intimate and passionate. Paul and George do a great job backing him.
    "Do You Want to Know A Secret?" is another song by Lennon/McCartney written for George, and George makes no effort to hide his Liverpudlian accent on words such as "well" and "tell," and the result is a performance of great charm. It's to his credit that George avoids sounding saccharine and cloying all at once with such a teeny-bopperish tune. Imagine if this song were sung by Peter Noone of Herman's Hermits. Yikes!
    "A Taste of Honey" is probably the only "mistake" on this album. Why include an American show tune? I find it implausible that John, George or Ringo would have volunteered this song. That said, John does a nice job once again harmonizing underneath Paul, keeping the song a safe distance from cutesy. "Honey" indeed.
    "There's A Place" is a truly excellent song about youthful confusion and angst around an infatuation that conveys much lyrically in very few words. Yet somehow a certain "old-soul" aspect adds maturity and depth to the song. The passion and understanding that John and Paul bring to the words is palpable, and adding George in on the repeated last line is a bonus. Greatness, and it could very well have served as a fitting end to this album but for...
    "Twist and Shout" is a perfect coda to the album, a perfect bookend to "Saw Her Standing There", and a perfect first take which propels the whole album into the stratosphere. As with "Baby It's You" it supercedes the original in its directness and power. Ringo locks in to the perfect "twist" tempo. Everyone cherishes this song and it establishes John's place as one of rock's greatest singers. Listen for the "cluck" that Paul must have added at the very end, a little touch that echoes down and expands out to his "Her Majesty" on Abbey Road.
    People who claim that this first album is not as great as their later work miss the point entirely-- this is not an "album" so much as England's best LIVE rock 'n roll band (at the time) captured in all their glory on tape. They did not become a STUDIO band until quite a while later....more info
  • Laughable Horribly Produced Debut
    Please Please me is the beatles debut, that means it's one of thier worst albums and not worth purchasing. ...more info
  • awesome!
    I was so happy when I found this album. In the past when I looked for certain songs, they couldn't even be found on "The best of The Beatles..." or whatever the compilations are called. I'm happy I found an album for under $30 with such great songs. I just wish it had more. Perhaps, they didn't produce big albums in the '60s like they do today....more info
  • awesome
    this is a great album early beatles great songs like i saw her standing there, and the classic twist and shout. i highly reccomend....more info
  • Ar!
    It irritates me to see people say things like "The vocals are shakey," "it's raw" and "It wasn't about musical talent" and stuff like that. All the notes are perfectly fine, the timing is perfect, the chords are played perfectly, everything is in key. It's all close to perfect, as it would be with any real musician. Vocals are 100% on now because of auto tuners. Anyway

    Two notes in Anna sound a little weird because the song is in D, and the notes go from E to F#, and neither of those notes are within the G chord which is being played behind it. This is still correct, though.

    Anyhow, this album is great. Their earlier songs are the best to me, because it was more about the sound of the music other than the 'message' they were trying to send out. And after all, people originally listen to music because of how it sounds, not what it says, right? I've never seen a four year old contemplating deeply on the lyrics of a Radiohead song. So if you like music for music and not just for "messages" then this is for you. ...more info
  • Please Please Me rocks!
    This is an album of early Beatles songs and is a different compilation than was available in America at the time it was released. Some were released here on "Introducing The Beatles" on the Vee-Jay lable and some on "The Beatles Second Album" on the Capital lable as I recall. They would take the British Parlophone releases which had more songs and split them up into different contents here so they had more albums to sell. There are some of the early hits here and others that didn't get deserved airplay like "Misery" and "Ask Me Why". But they had so many great songs coming out that the radio programmers probably didn't know what to do! And back in those days they spun single 45's not album tracks....more info
  • Beatlemania!
    Please Please Me by The Beatles was their first studio album. Paul, John, Ringo, and George play their british hearts out on tracks like: I Saw Her Standing There, Love Me Do, Twist and Shout, P.S. I Love You, and the title-track. These 4 lads were so talented, start your Beatles collection right here. Enjoy!...more info
  • First time buyer
    First class service with a good follow-up, telling me it was on it's way. Product arrived well packaged and in great shape...more info
  • the album that changed the world
    there have been only 7 people i would consider to be musical geniuses since musics inception.theres mozart,beethoven,bob dylan,jimi hendrix and ozzy osbourne.then theres the 2 guys who made this spectacular album come to life and changed the world and music forever.they were john lennon and paul mccartney[ringo and george are cool too just not geniuses].this was thier debut sure youve heard of beatlemania.well this was what spawned starts with "i saw her standing there".its a listenable tune about a underage chick and how she used his trust against him to break his covered the song many years later.then johns very 1st "im so sad i could just die" type was called "misery".a great song for if youre very depressed.i dont really recall "anna" to much but its ok."CHAINS" comes in its not about bondage,its about the ol ball and chain and inescapable with every beatle song,its good."boys" is next.i made a top 1000 songs i know and like one time and this was #1000.its my least favorite beatle song but thats not saying much since they are all at least good.then on with the #1s."please please me" rolls up a said,a smash hit!then the next of the most recognizable beatle songs and the only one to use the harmonica a whole bunch,"love me do".at one time,these 2 songs were #1 and #2 at the same time on the singles charts.they had a record for that that they broke 2 more times.the new record is they had the top 5 and another for having 7 in the top 10."ps i love you" is a i miss you song thats pretty.i remember the chipmunks doing this one and a few others.then the greatest song i have ever heard bar none!"baby its you".i totaly love this song and it made #1 on my top 1000.the other chipmunk song came next."do you want to know a secret?".the secrets out.he loves her."A taste of honey" is some odd attempt at olden times country.even in thier debut album they were experimenting with unfamiliar musical styles and instruments."theres a place" is borderline meditational in substance.but thats a story ill tell you laster.last theres one im sure youve heard all around called "twist and shout".a very danceable song.this album completely changed music back in the early 60s and everybody should own it. ...more info